The Sharks and the Foxx

* Texan Jamie Foxx, the cocky young quarterback in Oliver Stone's new football movie, is a huge fan of the Dallas Cowboys. "Does that make you angry?" he teased us yesterday from New York, where he was busy promoting "Any Given Sunday." "I know you're a Redskins town, but we kick you guys all the time."

Despite his questionable football allegiances, the 32-year-old Foxx (who starred in Fox TV's "In Living Color" and now has "The Jamie Foxx Show" on WB) is getting rave reviews for his performance as Willie Beamen, the third-string quarterback who rescues the Miami Sharks from ignominy. "I had to kick-start the old body," he said. "I gained about 15 pounds. I did a lot of weight training--about 2 1/2 to three hours a day--and I ran a bit. I was benching about 325, and I was running a 4.7 in pads for the 40-yard dash."

Foxx, who was a quarterback in high school, said the filming was sometimes grueling. In February, a movie fight between Foxx and rapper LL Cool J, who plays a running back, somehow turned into the real thing. "It got a little strange," Foxx said, "and the cops had to come down. But it all worked out for the best. It made the movie really intense."

As for working with the notorious Oliver Stone, "I call him the diabolical genius," Foxx said. "He would do whatever he needed to get the film done the way he wanted. He was very tough at times, but at the same time, when he gave you a compliment, you knew it was legit and it was the best thing you'd ever done."


Fresh from strutting her stuff for U.S. soldiers in the middle of a Bosnian snowstorm, Christie Brinkley told us yesterday that she's having a blast on Secretary of Defense Bill Cohen's holiday tour of the Balkans.

"It was wonderful--a veritable ocean of faces in front of the stage, everybody there in camouflage," she said by phone right after entertaining a couple of thousand troops in a hangar at Camp Eagle in Tuzla. "Basically, I come out with [football greats] Terry Bradshaw and Mike Singletary and do a little sketch in which I teach them how to be a supermodel. By the end, I unzip myself out of my flight suit and am wearing what I would describe as a second-skin red dress. A little tiny red negligee of a dress. And I work that dress for all it's worth."

The 45-year-old Brinkley's supermodel days may be behind her, but her super-siren days are still going strong. The onetime wife and muse of Billy Joel--who wrote "Uptown Girl" for her--is a mother of three on her fourth marriage, this time to 40-year-old architect Peter Cook. Brinkley told us that when she gets home tonight--after visiting soldiers in Kosovo and Macedonia--she'll resume collecting signatures in her campaign to be one of Vice President Gore's New York delegates (she votes in the Hamptons) at next summer's Democratic Convention.

"This tour is a massive undertaking, and it's really quite thrilling to be with the secretary," said Brinkley, who traveled to foreign climes with Bob Hope in the 1980s. "As long as we're with the secretary, I think we're safe. Bill Cohen is the big macher," she gushed, lapsing into Yiddish. "I spent a good 45 minutes with the secretary in his private room in the front of the plane. I feel so good knowing our secretary of defense is a man so sweet, so nice, so gentle. He's a poet, you know." Cohen's flu-stricken wife, Janet, is not along for the ride. But Brinkley's husband is.


* Here's a postscript to yesterday's item about the life-size milk chocolate statue of Army Gen. Henry H. Shelton, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Some readers have wondered whether the 6-foot-5-inch chocolate chairman will be broken up into bar-size pieces and eaten once he's taken out of Shelton's living room at Fort Myer. Master Sgt. Mark Jones--Shelton's personal cook and the man who conceived the remarkably lifelike statue--assures us that it will not become candy. "We might keep him at Fort Myer, maybe store him in the basement. And I've had some people at Fort Bragg tell me they can visualize him there at the Airborne museum," Jones said. "All we'd have to do is put him in a truck with a bag around him." The real Shelton, meanwhile, is staying put for now.

* Pope John Paul II has replaced his Mercedes with a customized armored Lancia sedan--a two-ton gift from Fiat, the Associated Press reports.

* After many months on the market, Sylvester Stallone's Miami mansion has finally been sold, the AP informs us. Sly, who paid $20 million for the 24,000-square-foot house and various improvements, is taking a bath on the deal, accepting $16.2 million from an unnamed buyer.